Archive for Peter Riddell

Peter took up the Directorship at the Institute for Government on 1st January 2012. He was previously a Senior Fellow at the Institute and divided his time here with his work for the Detainee Inquiry, a privy counsellor panel looking at whether the British Government was implicated in the improper treatment of detainees held by other countries (a role from which he resigned at the end of last year to concentrate on the IfG). At the Institute, he co-authored reports on Transitions and Ministerial Effectiveness and has been closely involved in work on political and constitutional reform. Until mid-2010, Peter was a journalist for nearly 40 years, split between the Financial Times and The Times, where he had been their domestic political analyst and commentator. He has been a regular broadcaster, has written seven books and delivered frequent lectures. He chairs the Hansard Society, a non-partisan charity which promoters understanding of Parliament and representative democracy. He will be stepping down from this role in the next few months. Peter has received two honorary doctorates of literature, is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, an Honorary Fellow of the Political Studies Association and was one of the first recipients of the President’s medal of the British Academy. He was appointed to the Privy Council in July 2010 in order to serve on the Detainee Inquiry.

Peter Riddell’s Posts

Be careful what you wish for: the dangers of a slim majority

, 8 May 2015

David Cameron sounded distinctly relieved when he announced that he would be leading a majority government for the first time, rather than a coalition. Obviously, he was personally pleased to be able to answer his party critics by – in contrast to 2010 – leading his party to an overall majority for the first...

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Governing made harder by the election campaign

, 6 May 2015

This is partly because of what has been said, and not said, about the main policy challenges facing the UK in what has, at times, appeared to be a competition in gimmicky vacuity. But, at root, the system is now dysfunctional with a mismatch between what many politicians say, the expectations produced and the...

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Decentralisation and devolution must be dealt with more coherently

, 30 April 2015

Whoever forms the next government will have to address the UK question. This is more than just than the Scottish, Welsh, Northern Ireland and English questions. It is about how the various parts of the UK relate to each other, and to the Union as a whole.

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Key questions for the parties after the election

, 22 April 2015

The main challenge for all politicians and parties during the election is how to win without tying their hands and making governing much harder over the next five years. Of course, winning votes always takes priority. But there will be life in office after May 7th, for someone.

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Clarify election guidelines before May 2015

, 4 February 2015

With uncertainty about the outcome of the general election, IfG Director Peter Riddell backs the call from the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee to “clarify the rules of the game” before May 2015.

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The delay with the Chilcot report is misunderstood

, 21 January 2015

Much of the political and media outrage over the further delay in publication of the Chilcot report into the Iraq war is exaggerated and misunderstands what such an inquiry involves. Of course, it would have been much better if the report had been published earlier, and the delay has damaged public confidence. But there...

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Keep calm and clarify

, 20 January 2015

The prospect of another hung parliament after the May 7 elections is being treated with a mixture of alarm and excitement by the business, political and media worlds. There are certainly risks in an inconclusive result, but the British political system is remarkably resilient. Government will carry on: services will be provided and...

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Looking ahead to the 2015 election

, 29 December 2014

No one is viewing next May’s general election with enthusiasm. The widespread expectation is of either an inconclusive result or a government without much authority.

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Lord Browne – Successes but ragged at the edges

, 18 November 2014

What is striking is how Lord Browne and other prominent business figures who are lead non-executive directors on 17 Whitehall boards have gained acceptance from departmental permanent secretaries – the very group who most strongly resisted their introduction by Francis Maude in 2010. Cynics might see this as producer capture, but there are positive...

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The updated guidance on the Osmotherly Rules

, 20 October 2014

Civil servants running the biggest projects will now be directly accountable to Parliament. The 34-year-old Osmotherly rules, providing guidance for ministers and civil servants appearing before select committees, have been rewritten to allow parliamentary select committees to question key officials (the Senior Responsible Owners or SROs) about the implementation of key projects.

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